Archive for March, 2014

Chopped Challenge Tickets on Sale

Monday, March 31st, 2014

Tickets are now  on sale for this year’s Chopped Challenge event, a benefit to raise money to fight hunger in Maine. This year’s competitors are:

  • Chris Gould  from Central Provisions
  • Jason Williams from The Well at Jordan’s Farm
  • Karl Deuben from Small Axe Truck
  • Shannon Bard  from Zapoteca

Many other local restaurants and vendors will be serving tastes of their food and products at the event. For more information see this listing on Eventbrite.

Chopped Challenge is once again being hosted by Grace and is taking place Sunday May 4 at 5 pm.

Review of Mi Sen

Monday, March 31st, 2014

The Bollard reviewed Mi Sen.

At $11, my friend’s chicken massaman curry, also on the special menu, was our biggest splurge. A Thai dish of Persian origin, this curry is slow-cooked, making for meltingly soft potatoes, onions and carrots, and a tender cut of chicken that my friend pronounced “so amazing.” But the sauce itself was the highlight, with its creamy coconut base and undertones of tamarind.

This Week’s Events: Food in a Networked World, Chocolate Lover’s Fling, Gasharoo

Monday, March 31st, 2014

Wednesday — Professor Myron Beasley and Joe Appel from Rosemont will be leading a a discussion at Space Gallery on the topic of Food In a Networked World.

ThursdayMurray Carpenter, author of Caffeinated: How Our Daily Habit Helps, Hurts, and Hooks Us will be at Longfellow for a book signing, The Great Lost Bear will be showcasing beer from Rogue, GMRI is hosting a tasting event with their culinary partners.

SaturdayFirst Friday Art Walk is taking place.

SaturdayVena’s Fizz House is teaching a bitters class, there will be a wine tasting at LeRoux, Novare Res is holding their annual Gasharoo celebration of beers from Allagash, and the Winter Farmers Market is taking place at the Urban Farm Fermentory on Anderson Street.

SundayChef Steve Corry will be headlining at Flanagan’s Table, the 28th Annual Chocolate Lovers Fling is taking place, and Toast on the Coast, a benefit for the Easter Seals, is happening at the Ocean Gateway Terminal.

For more information on these and other upcoming food happenings in the area, visit the event calendar.

If you are holding a food event this week that’s not listed above, publicize it by adding it as a comment to this post.

Vietnam Bakery Now Open

Sunday, March 30th, 2014


Vietnam Bakery had their grand opening on Saturday. They’re located at 267 Saint John Street just a few doors down from Kim’s Sandwich & Cafe.

In addition to Vietnamese baked goods, Vietnam Bakery serves pho and other savory dishes.

Reviews: C-Squared & Eventide

Sunday, March 30th, 2014

Maine Sunday Telegram has reviewed C-Squared,

…the C Square Restaurant and Top of the East Lounge offer chic trappings in which to have stylish American bistro fare and expertly crafted cocktails. The kitchen strives to use locally sourced ingredients and prepares them simply and thoughtfully. Standout starter dishes at dinner include the charcuterie board, oysters three ways, panko crusted goat cheese and a good New England clam chowder. Entrees include pan-seared duck breast, day-boat scallops, brined pork tenderloin, sautéed Maine lobster and grilled beef tenderloin.

and The Golden Dish has reviewed Eventide.

All gushing aside, Eventide is  as good as ever, and maybe one day they can expand next door or upstairs or somewhere so one can get in, sit at a table and eat in a civilized manner.  On the other hand, shoulder to shoulder with everyone else clamoring to wine and dine there also makes the intensely delicious food seem just right.

Red Sea Restaurant Now Open

Saturday, March 29th, 2014

Red Sea Restaurant is holding its grand opening today, 11 am to 10 pm. The restaurant is located at 30 Washington Ave. The menu includes a variety of Eritrean and Ethiopian dishes like Sambusa, Falafel, Zigni as well as vegetarian entrees and rice-based dishes.

Hugo’s Yankee Swap Series

Saturday, March 29th, 2014

yankeeswap_logoHugo’s has announced a new guest chef dinner series called The Yankee Swap,

We’re thrilled to announce The Yankee Swap Dinner Series, a collaborative dinner series where Chefs Andrew and Mike will swap kitchens and host dinners with some of New England’s most talented young chefs. We can’t wait to show Portland diners what’s going on in other great restaurants in our region, and to bring Hugo’s food to neighboring states.

The first two dinners at Hugo’s are with:

Yankee Swap Dinners include a cocktail reception and multi-course meal for $100 per person. Optional wine pairings are $65.

Tortilleria Pachanga

Saturday, March 29th, 2014

The Portland Phoenix has published a profile of Tortilleria Pachanga.

Rowe has expanded her tortilla operation into a production space on Industrial Way in Portland next to established brewers Allagash Brewing and up-and-comers Foundation and Bissell Brothers Brewing Companies. A new machine, purchased with funding from a successful Indiegogo campaign, is capable of pressing and cooking 12,000 tortillas per hour. Rowe has learned to talk about “fixed overhead costs” and “profit margins,” while ensuring she stays true to her mission of using Maine-grown corn to produce fresh tortillas.

MECA Offering Culinary Classes

Friday, March 28th, 2014

meca-logoThe Maine College of Art is offering a set of Culinary Arts classes this Summer as part of their continuing education program. Here’s the list of the Summer options:

  • The Art and Craft of Food Writing taught by Susan Axelrod from the Press Herald
  • Pastry Perfection taught by Tara Smith from Standard Baking
  • Farm to Fork Workshop taught by chef David Levi, owner of Vinland
  • All About Cheese taught by Sarah Wiederkehr from Winter Hill Farm
  • Microbrewing taught by Chresten Sorensen from Bunker Brewing

According to the release:

To help orchestrate this new realm of programming, MECA has engaged the expertise of Culinary Consultant and former Executive Vice President of The International Culinary Center (formerly The French Culinary Institute), Christopher Papagni, Ph.D. According to Papagni, “Some of the best of Portland’s culinary scene has been selected for this first round of MECA classes. Keeping up with new food trends and the rapid growth of artisan talent in Maine, will insure dynamic programming for a long time to come.”

Papagni is now working to recruit instructors for the Fall semester at MECA.

Brewer:Farmer Connection at Risk

Friday, March 28th, 2014

The Bangor Daily News, MPBN and Press Herald have all reported on the impact of proposed federal rules that would limit the ability of farmers to source spent grain from brewers to feed their livestock.

Commercial beer makers are seeking a reprieve from a proposed federal rule that they say will cost them a lot of money, and also hurt local farmers. For centuries, brewers have been handing over their spent grain – a byproduct of the beer-making process – to farmers to use as cattle feed. But they’re worried that mutually beneficial arrangement could soon come to an end.

Interview with Chefs Wiley and Taylor

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Sadierae & Co. have published and interview with chefs Mike Wiley and Andrew Taylor from Hugo’s/Eventide.

Do you have a favorite chef that you really, really admire?
Andrew: There are so many both from way back when and now… but when I was getting into cooking, I really loved Chris Schlesinger at East Coast Grill in Cambridge, MA. It definitely wasn’t the fanciest restaurant and he doesn’t own it anymore, but fifteen years ago, the food was so much fun – way ahead of its time in Boston. Chris really seems like a very intelligent guy too. He’s written several great cookbooks and he’s still a contributor to the NY Times.

Mike: I’m a reader, and right now, I’m way into David Kinch’s new book, Manresa. I’m so impressed by Chef Kinch’s approach to agriculture, food, seasonality, and even training young cooks. The guy makes his own finishing salt, I mean, come on!

Review of Walter’s

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Peter Peter Portland Eater has reviewed Walter’s.

Walter’s continues to impress me every time I go. They’ve been rock solid over the long haul and that consistency keeps bringing me back. Don’t hesitate to go there and sit at the bar either. If you’re looking for a night out with some awesome cocktails, you can’t go wrong with their drinks. They are delicious and pack both flavor and a potent punch inside your glass. Regardless of why your going though, Walter’s is sure to please even the most discerning foodie’s pallet.

Closing of Roost

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

Urban Eye has published a report on the closing of Roost.

Preparing to pack up their juicers for good, proprietors Kathleen Flanagan and Jeanette Richelson put a positive spin on the situation. ”An ending is just an opportunity for a new beginning,” said Flanagan. ”We are still processing the whole thing.”

Low foot traffic, high overhead and a health-conscious consumer getting handy with a blender ate away at their business plan.

Reviews: Vinland, Otto Pizza

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

The Press Herald has published a bar review of Vinland,

Vinland isn’t just a restaurant or a bar – it’s an experience. Adjacent to Congress Square in Portland, Vinland might look unassuming from the outside, but you’re sure to leave feeling at least a little more educated about food, drink and the possibilities of a 100 percent local menu. The cocktails are playful and artistic, and the service is first-rate.

and a review of the South Portland Otto.

When I tried the mashed potato pizza, which I had before and loved, its potatoes were more smashed than mashed, with chunks of potato sitting atop the pie. The bacon was smoky and crisp. Overall a very nice pie.

Under Construction: Red Sea Restaurant

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

A new eatery named Red Sea Restaurant is under construction at 30 Washington Ave in the space that had been occupied by Safari. According to a sign in the window they hope to open soon, perhaps by the end of March.